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Control snafu shows how a publisher struggles with next-generation upgrades

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Last month, 505 Games announced that “unfortunately it is not able to offer a way to upgrade all existing [console] Control players “for improvements to the PlayStation 5 and / or Xbox Series S / X. Today, however, apparently temporarily snafu shows how simple such a free upgrade can be for many Control players of current generation systems, at least.

As reported in the long thread ResetEra, a number of players who have previously purchased Control The Digital Deluxe Edition of the PS4 came as a surprise last night when they discovered that they also own it Control Latest edition. This new version includes the main game, DLC and the season pass and is the one that “takes[s] a full advantage of the power and features provided by these new consoles, ”says 505 Games.

Within hours, however, those same players noted that their ownership of the Ultimate Edition had been taken away and returned to the current generation of the Digital Deluxe Edition. This version will not receive hardware-specific enhancements when played on next-generation consoles.

505 Games did not respond to Ars Technica̵

7;s request for comment on the obvious Snafu (which may have been caused by a simple data entry error in the PlayStation Store). But the temporary upgrade underscores how simple it would be to give a free upgrade to the next-generation console for many Control owners.

This is not so surprising. Many other publishers – including Bethesda, Ubisoft and EA – have promised that their recent and / or upcoming versions of the PS4 and Xbox One will include free upgrades to the corresponding next-generation console version. Microsoft is pushing hard for its Smart Delivery system to help automate this process for the Xbox Series S and X.

What is the problem?

However, 505 insisted on providing such a free upgrade for Control is too difficult. “Although it is a challenge to implement any next-generation platform game, we quickly realized that it is even more difficult to upgrade our current user base to the next generation with full parity between platforms with our annual game,” the company wrote. in a blog post last month.

Each pursued path to the 505 upgrade, the company said, “means that at least one group of players is eventually left out of the upgrade for various reasons. To date, we can’t offer an upgrade at all and let any group out feel unfair. We understand that’s not what you want to hear. “

This may be technically true in certain situations. If you bought Control for current-generation consoles on a disc, for example, this version would not be compatible with the XS Series S or Digital Edition of the PlayStation 5, neither of which offers the required disc to verify ownership. Players who have purchased disk-incompatible hardware are likely to enter their purchase knowing of this problem.

Game expansion packs also complicate things a bit. Giving players with the basic version of Control for free Latest edition an upgrade would essentially mean giving these players free access to current and upcoming game extensions. And since the full “Ultimate Edition” is the only 505 version being developed for next-generation consoles, the company says it’s impossible to offer separate base game upgrades and extensions.

However, as last night’s snaff points out, none of these problems apply to players who have purchased Digital Deluxe Edition on Controlwhich also includes a full DLC season pass. The same upgrade can be provided to players who have purchased the main game and the season pass separately (via disk or digital) without too much effort (players who have purchased current a la carte extensions may not be lucky, logistically).

Instead, all of these players were left to pay $ 39.99 to upgrade an old game to new hardware. Those who do not will still be able to play their current versions of Control through backward compatibility, but the promised “improved experience” in this case will be less pronounced than the more complete remaster of the next generation of Ultimate Edition.

This is a confusing situation, made even more confusing by the insistence of 505 that since it cannot give everyone who bought Control free upgrade, no one you should get a free upgrade. We’ll see if any other publishers are caught in a similar way during what may be the most complex transition of a console generation to date.

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